Champagne VS Prosecco – Christmas 2016
28th December 2016
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The phenomenal growth of Prosecco in the UK is no secret. The Drinks Business reported that the sparkling wine category had increased by a huge 33.5% between 2010 and 2014, with Prosecco being the main driver. This year Harpers supported this, revealing that Prosecco sales specifically had grown by a third in the last year alone.
It is not surprising that it has become so popular, with a light, fresh taste that is more appealing than most sparkling wines and this, along with its affordability, makes Prosecco a drink for all occasions.
A Laithwaite’s study actually found that ‘63% of couples now toast their nuptials with a flute of Prosecco, compared to just 8% who raise a glass of Champagne.’
But with Christmas just around the corner, what will be the 2016 partygoers’ fizz of choice, Champagne or Prosecco?
Proof Drinks’ latest study (500 UK consumers) discovered that 54% of people would prefer to be served Prosecco than Champagne at their Christmas party this year. The result was predominantly led by women (53.8%) whilst men were almost evenly split, 51.3% Prosecco vs. 48.7% Champagne. However, the fact that Prosecco even gained 51 per cent of the male vote shows that the Italian bubbles are appealing to both gender categories and not just synonymous with women.
When broken down by age, the 25-44 age groups preferred Prosecco, whilst the 65+ age category was the only category to want Champagne (57.0%).
“I think that the higher age categories will be less engaged with the rise in the popularity of Prosecco due it being a fairly recent addition to most bar and restaurant menus, whereas the lower age categories have experienced its influx more directly. In addition to the affordability of Prosecco over Champagne, easy-to-drink Prosecco cocktails are more commonly replacing or sitting alongside a smaller selection of Champagne cocktails and events like ‘Prosecco brunches’ are becoming a more regular occurrence at venues frequented by this age group.”
Suneetha Adivihalli, UK Brand Manager, Scavi & Ray.
What does this mean for venues?
With the Christmas party season fast approaching, these findings offer a significant cost advantage to venues. Drinks receptions at Christmas parties have traditionally been Champagne or Cava based, but with most Prosecco options being on average £10 cheaper per bottle than Champagne, a venue could make a significant cost saving by making the switch to Prosecco.
Also, premium Prosecco brands like Scavi & Ray still offer quality while being cheaper than a mid-range or premium Champagne brand.
Venues also need to start thinking about expanding their Prosecco range for customers. As the Prosecco consumer becomes more educated, they are naturally going to start asking for choice when it comes to ordering their glass or bottle of Prosecco.
“It is not uncommon that we will see a venue offer 5 different bottles of Champagne on their menu and only a single bottle of Prosecco, yet the Prosecco will do 90% of their sparkling wine sales!”
James McDermott, Director at Proof Drinks.
With substantial increases in year on year sales figures, weddings and now Christmas parties under Prosecco’s belt, there seems to be no stopping the growth and popularity of Prosecco as we stumble into 2017.